Darwin did in the werewolf
In a July meeting of the British Society for the History of Science, historian Brian Regal of Kean University in Union, N.J., will demonstrate how werewolves, feared hiding behind every tree in travelers' tales for centuries, died out in folklore following the publication of Darwin's Origin of Species in 1859.
"The spread of the idea of evolution helped kill off the werewolf because a canid-human hybrid makes no sense from an evolutionary point of view,” Regal says, in a society statement. Instead, tales of ape-men -- Yeti, Sasquatch and Bigfoot -- began to appear in popular tales, began to "evolve" in the popular imagination, he finds.
comments powered by Disqus
Randll Reese Besch - 6/19/2009
There are very old stories of "ape men" on every continent but Antarctica. These are thousands of years old in some cases up to this day. From the Americas to Africa and Asia. Most never heard of Darwin or his ideas.
The Lycanthrope is related to the vampire and other things in folklore. It is portrayed as a magic action or a kind of disease that is more related to psychopaths and cannibalism. This just isn't a viable conclusion. Some of the stores like in France are of the Lupin/Lubin who are portrayed as canid apes. Some are shape-shifting wizards and there are so many others I can't take up the space on that here.
A very good compendium is "Vampire Universe" by Jonathan Maberry.
- NYT History Book Reviews: Who Got Noticed this Week?
- Researchers have discovered a previously unknown 149-page manuscript defending homosexuality.
- What Counts as Historical Evidence? The Fracas over John Stauffer’s Black Confederates
- Israeli journalist-turned-biographer, Shabtai Teveth, is remembered for his attack on the New Historians
- Harvard’s Drew Faust says the Civil War marked the start of large-scale industrial war, not WW I